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Aqib Talib: I learned how to be a professional with Pats


Critics might scoff at "The Patriot Way," but Broncos cornerback Aqib Talib insists Bill Belichick's New England program was the key to his development as a Pro Bowl-caliber player.

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"One thing I have to say about that establishment over there: They're very professional," Talib said, via "You go there for one season and your professionalism will go up a plus-2. If you're at seven, you'll be a nine.

"That definitely helped my professionalism as far as preparation for the game, how to handle the media, my behavior on the field -- everything. I really learned how to be a professional over there. I went there a seven and came out a nine. I'm working on being a 10."

Talib was in and out of trouble for four and a half years with the Buccaneers before arriving in New England in the middle of the 2013 season. Since then, he has been selected to three consecutive Pro Bowls with the Patriots and Broncos.

Belichick's indoctrination into "The Patriot Way" works primarily because he has won six Super Bowl rings and has shown a willingness to jettison anyone who doesn't fit in.

It starts with the idea of "Do your job," a demand that every player and assistant coach knows his job, carries out his assignment and gets it done no matter what it takes.

As long as Belichick has buy-in from a Hall of Fame quarterback sitting atop football's pantheon, it's only natural that the other 52 players will fall in line, perpetuating the Patriots' 21st century dynasty.


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